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Press releaseSALT LAKE CITY -- The Westminster men's basketball team received a No. 9 national ranking in the NAIA Division I Men's Basketball Coaches' Top 25 Preseason Poll that was released on Monday.
The Griffins received 232 total points in the poll. Westminster was ranked No. 6 in the final poll of the 2008-09 season. Robert Morris (Ill.) received 301 total points and the No. 1 position in the poll.
Five different teams received at least one first place vote, led by the four that Fresno Pacific (Calif.) received. Mountain State (W.Va.) came in second in the poll with 297 points. Fresno Pacific finished third with 287 points followed by Oklahoma Baptist (278), McKendree (Ill.) (267), Rogers State (Okla.) (244), and Georgetown (Ky.) (242). The remaining teams in the top-10 are Concordia (Calif.) (234), Westminster, and Texas Wesleyan (220).
Westminster will face three teams that are ranked in this preseason poll. The Griffins face No. 8 Concordia on November 13 and No. 3 Fresno Pacific on November 14. Both of those games are on a neutral site in Las Vegas, Nevada. Westminster will also face defending national champions Rocky Mountain College, who are ranked No. 15 in this poll, twice during Frontier Conference action.
Montana State-Northern and Montana Western, both from the Frontier Conference, each received votes in the poll and appear on the Westminster schedule this season. Westmont (Calif.) also received votes and appears on the Griffins schedule on November 28 at the Behnken Field House.
Westminster returns nine players from the 2008-09 team that went 30-5 and advanced to the quarterfinals of the NAIA National Championships. Weston Anderson, Jeramie Hopson, Blair Prowse, and Conner Nielsen are being expected to have solid senior seasons. Hopson is the only returning starter from last season, but Anderson and Nielsen were big contributors off the bench one year ago.
The season begins on Friday, November 6 when the Griffins host in-state rival Dixie State at 7:30 p.m. in the Behnken Field House.
2009-2010 NAIA Division I Men's Basketball Coaches' Top 25 Preseason Poll - (Oct. 26)
(Courtesy of Westminster College)